National League Preview from The Sports Network|
Monday, July 30th
(All times eastern)
New York Mets (49-53) at San Francisco Giants (55-46), 10:15 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: New York - Jeremy Hefner (1-4, 5.40)
San Francisco - Madison Bumgarner (11-6, 3.10)
(Sports Network) - The San Francisco Giants only have themselves to blame for
losing grip on the National League West lead. Tonight, they hope to bounce
back versus the New York Mets in the opener of a four-game series at AT&T
The Giants have lost four straight and sit a percentage point ahead of the Los
Angeles Dodgers for division bragging rights. They were just swept in three
games against L.A. and dropped a 4-0 decision in Sunday's series finale.
Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw hurled a five-hit shutout, while Giants right-
hander Ryan Vogelsong was saddled with the hard-luck loss for giving up two
runs - one earned - over six innings. Jeremy Affeldt allowed a pair of runs in
"We got two months of baseball to play and a lot of things can happen between
now and then. If history repeats itself, this division always comes down to
the last couple weeks of the season," Vogelsong said.
San Francisco managed just five hits and was outscored, 19-3, in the series.
It is 2-4 so far on a 10-game homestand and hopes Madison Bumgarner can
continue his home dominance when he toes the rubber tonight. Bumgarner is 7-1
with a 1.89 earned run average in nine starts at AT&T Park this season, but
did not receive a decision his last time out in a 3-2 win over San Diego by
Bumgarner allowed two runs in seven innings in that one and remained at 11-6
in 20 starts with a 3.10 ERA. The left-hander, who is 1-2 in his past four
starts, faced the Mets for the first time in his career during a 7-2 win on
April 23rd at Citi Field, where he fired seven innings of one-run ball.
New York split a four-game series at Arizona to kick off an 11-game trek and
is coming off Sunday's 5-1 win behind a strong performance from R.A. Dickey.
Dickey, an All-Star knuckleballer, allowed one unearned run and four hits in
seven innings of work for his NL-leading 14th win of the season. He also
fanned eight batters.
"I just kept telling myself to stay with it. It (knuckleball) was pretty
good," said Dickey, who experienced bouts of nausea during the game. "I felt
like I had a pretty good knuckleball the whole nine (innings)."
Scott Hairston knocked in two runs, while David Wright and Andres Torres
scored twice for New York, which won for just the third time in the last 17
games and will also visit San Diego for a three-game set on this road trip.
First-year major leaguer Jeremy Hefner draws the start for New York tonight
and he sports a 1-4 record with a 5.40 ERA in 13 games (4 starts). Hefner, a
right-hander, is filling in for an injured Johan Santana and took the loss in
Wednesday's 5-2 setback against Washington. He gave up three runs - two earned
- in six innings.
Hefner made his major league debut against San Francisco on April 23rd with
three scoreless innings of relief in the first game of a doubleheader.
07/30 10:50:20 ET